Bats in the belfry? How about the State House?

Vermont legislators pretty much couldn’t care less about a number of bats taking refuge in the Montpelier legislature, according to an Associated Press report:

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Workers say it’s not uncommon to see the furry, bug-eating bats flying around, especially during the summer months when they seek cooler, air-conditioned hallways.

Vermont State Curator David Schutz, who is charged with overseeing the restoration, care and conservation of the gold-domed, 155-year-old Statehouse, says he’s lost count of the number of bats he’s seen.

“Good lord,” he exclaimed. “Over the 30-some years that I’ve been here? A lot of bats.”

The bats are coming out of a cavernous attic in the State House that officials haven’t tried to seal up, according to Schutz.

Capitol Police told the AP that their strategy for dealing with the furry winged intruders who find themselves in the legislative chambers is simple — close the doors and open the windows.

While the bats may be a whimsical reflection of Vermont rural life, state officials still advise residents to be wary of indoor bats, as many carry the rabies virus.

Bats who have bitten or scratched a person should be caught and submitted for rabies testing.